Thunderbolt is on a roll. A few months ago we were moaning about a lack of peripherals. Suddenly there are disk drives and docks, such as the new Elgato Thunderbolt Dock, appearing by the day. All this is before most of us get our hands on Thunderbolt 2 which is already here on the new MacPro and, presumably, scheduled to migrate to other models in the range this year.
Things are hotting up. Today, from MacRumors, we hear that Intel is planning yet another enhancement, code-named Alpine Ridge, that will increase bandwidth from TB2’s 20Gbps to a blistering 40Gpbs.
The specification shows a 50 percent reduction in power consumption and new sockets which can also handle device charging up to 100 Watts. There will be adapters for backward compatibility with TB1 and 2. The development means that everything, including all peripherals, additional ports and even the MacBook’s power supply will soon be handled by just one cable.
No news yet on a date for the introduction of Thunderbolt 3 but all this activity is encouraging for those of us who have committed to Thunderbolt in preference to the slower but ubiquitous USB 3.0 standard. The renewed confidence will encourage the sale of the still-expensive disk drives and other peripherals.